The Instigator
Pro-lifeConservative
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Mathgeekjoe
Con (against)
Winning
4 Points

The Bible teaches that only certain people will go to Heaven

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Mathgeekjoe
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/11/2015 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 976 times Debate No: 73281
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (13)
Votes (1)

 

Pro-lifeConservative

Pro

In a comment you wrote, mathgeekjoe, you said that the Bible teaches that everyone can get to Heaven, depending on their soul. I disagree. I feel that the Bible teaches that everyone can get to Heaven, but only if they are true, born-again Christians, or true Jews if Jesus had not died yet.
For this debate, both of us may only use the Bible as our source, and interpretations of the Bible (i.e. sermons, footnotes). Please be consistent with the Bible you use (use a single version), and cite it once, during round one. Cite any other sources at they appropriate spots. The format for the debate will be as follows:
Round 1: Rules, acceptance, citations
Round 2: First Arguments
Round 3: Rebuttals, second arguments
Round 4: Final rebuttals, closing statements.

The time to argue is three days, with maximum arguments being at 10,000 characters. Voting shall last for ten days. Voting will be conducted by a seven point voting style, with no restrictions concerning Elo score.

Good luck!
Mathgeekjoe

Con

I accept the debate. The bible I will be using is the New American Bible.
Debate Round No. 1
Pro-lifeConservative

Pro

Pro-lifeConservative forfeited this round.
Mathgeekjoe

Con

"For it is not those who hear the law who are just in the sight of God; it is those who keep it who will be declared just. When Gentiles who do not have the law keep it as by instinct, these men although without the law serve as a law for themselves. It shows that the demands of the law are written in their hearts. Their conscience bears witness together with that law, their thoughts will accuse or defend them on the day when, in accordance with the gospel I preach, God will pass judgement on the secrets of men through Jesus Christ. " Romans 2: 13-16 New American Standard Bible 1970
Debate Round No. 2
Pro-lifeConservative

Pro

I do apologize for not posting last round, I was extremely busy with school work.

Next round, could you please explain why you feel those verses prove that anyone can get into heaven, without regard to their soul, you should not rely strictly on a source as your evidence, you should elaborate yourself on it.

Another quick note: I did not mention that I will be using the English Standard Version in Round One, my dearest apologies.

First: Romans 3:23 states that, "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God."
Three chapters later, Paul states that "the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."
The death there is, in the Greek, thanatos, which is Strong's word 2288.
From these two verses, we see that every person has sinned, and that the cost of sinning is thanatos, which is eternal separation from God.
Romans 10:9-10 "because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved."
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."
Now, we have:
Everyone is a sinner
Sinners go to hell
Anyone can be saved through a simple process
Only those who are saved will go to Heaven
Therefore, only certain people will go to heaven. Those certain people, are those who are saved. Everyone has the ability to be saved, not everyone chooses that choice, though. The Bible teaches that only believers, a certain group of people, will go to Heaven.
Mathgeekjoe

Con

"the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord."
That is why Jesus died on the cross. Jesus died on the cross for everyone sins, not just Christians. If Jesus didn't die on the cross, the gates of heaven would still be closed to everyone. He chose to die on the cross in an act of mercy and love which is why it is a free gift.
"and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world." 1 John 2:2 This verse shows that he died for the sins of the whole world not just those who believe in him.

"By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, "I have come to know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him;" 1 John 2:3-4 This can be interpreted as if you believe in god(Know him) then you would follow the commandments. If you claim that you believe in him(know him) but don't follow the commandments then you are a liar. Logically you can also do the reverse of this, if you follow the commandments then you (know him).

Latter in 1 John 2, he uses the reverse in what he called a new commandment. "Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. On the other hand, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true Light is already shining. The one who says he is in the Light and yet hates his brother is in the darkness until now. The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes." 1 John 2:7-11. Note that anyone who loves his brother abides in the Light. It does not say that someone needs to be christian or jewish to be in the light, it merely says that they need to love their brother to be in the light.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."
I do not disagree with this, but what is defined as believes in him does not require one to hear about him. If one never hears of the word of Jesus but still follows his rules, they in their heart believe in him. But one who claims to follow Jesus but does not follow his rules does not believe in him.

"For it is not those who hear the law who are just in the sight of God; it is those who keep it who will be declared just. When Gentiles who do not have the law keep it as by instinct, these men although without the law serve as a law for themselves. It shows that the demands of the law are written in their hearts. Their conscience bears witness together with that law, their thoughts will accuse or defend them on the day when, in accordance with the gospel I preach, God will pass judgement on the secrets of men through Jesus Christ. " Romans 2: 13-16 New American Standard Bible 1970 This verse says directly that people who do not hear the law can still follow the law based on what is in their hearts. It also says that what matters is not that you hear it but if you keep it. This verse directly points out that those who have not heard the law of god can still get to heaven(just in the sight of God).
Debate Round No. 3
Pro-lifeConservative

Pro

"Jesus died on the cross for everyone sins, not just Christians." Yes, that is true. However, only Christians can go to Heaven. God is perfect, and man is not unless their sins are forgiven. So, everyone who gets into Heaven will be perfect, because they accept Christ's gift of taking on their sins. Those who do not repent of their sins will bear them forever, and go to hell. Also, anyone can become a Christian, you are not born a Christian, you are born again a Christian.
Now, correct me if I am wrong, but you just were saying in your first paragraph last round that anyone can get to Heaven because Jesus died on the cross for everyone's sins. However, in my last round, I stated a similar statement about how only those who accept the gift of Jesus' death will be saved.

You then say that anyone who follows Jesus' commandments is saved because they know God. However, you said in round two, "'For it is not those who hear the law who are just in the sight of God; it is those who keep it who will be declared just. When Gentiles who do not have the law keep it as by instinct, these men although without the law serve as a law for themselves. It shows that the demands of the law are written in their hearts. Their conscience bears witness together with that law, their thoughts will accuse or defend them on the day when, in accordance with the gospel I preach, God will pass judgement on the secrets of men through Jesus Christ.'" I think you put this verse in because you wanted to say that everyone who listens and follows the teachings of the Bible will be saved. You are right, because the Bible commands people to become Christians. However, this does not support that anyone can get into Heaven without regard to their soul. Rather, it says the exact opposite. Also, knowing God and being a Christian are completely different. You yourself say that "knowing God" is "believing in God." Does this mean that Satan and demons will be in Heaven? Of course not! Those demons believe in God, and SHUDDER WITH TERROR (James 2:19)! God is real, and to believe in him means to believe that he exists. We only grow closer to God if we follow his laws, so what John means is that you must follow God's commandments in order to know him better. Just because you follow his commandments does not mean you are a Christian, unless you follow every commandment, in which you would convert to Christianity (Acts 16:31). Now, before you say, "that says believe..." look at the original Greek for believe, pisteuo. This word means to believe or entrust. Therefore, "Trust in [what] the Lord Jesus Christ [did on the cross] and you will be saved."

You point out that anyone who keeps the law will get into Heaven. As I said earlier, the law teaches you to become a Christian, to give your life to God, to get to Heaven. I feel we may not be understanding each other, that we might just be arguing back and forth the same things, meaning the same thing. If this is indeed the case, please let me know or clarify it for me. I feel that we may be both arguing the same thing, just under different lights, because I say that only those who are Christians will go to Heaven, and you seem to be saying that those who follow the law will get to Heaven. The law teaches that only those who are saved will go to Heaven, so we may just be saying the same thing in different words. If this is not the case, please correct me.

All in all, this has been a fun debate, I have learned a lot through it. Good luck to you in future debates, and God bless you!
Mathgeekjoe

Con

"Those who do not repent of their sins will bear them forever, and go to hell."
How do you know what people do at the point of death? If ones soul is willing to repent, then they will repent during their death. Only those who would refuse to repent are those who would go to hell. You assume that only christian repent their sins. There is a reason why we can't know for sure if someone is going to heaven or hell with the exception of certain cases in the bible.

"I think you put this verse in because you wanted to say that everyone who listens and follows the teachings of the Bible will be saved." I don't think you read the quote, it specifically mentions that people who do not hear of the law can still follow it and be seen as just in the sight of god.

"You yourself say that "knowing God" is "believing in God." Does this mean that Satan and demons will be in Heaven?"
The Satan does not know god, he just knows that is real. I can talk to a person, know they exist, know what they are capable of, and not really know them.
This is confirmed in this verse "By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, "I have come to know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him;" 1 John 2:3-4
If Satan and demons claim to know god, but wouldn't keep his commandments, then they are a lying. This proves that Satan and demons do not know god yet they know he exist, know his power, and even talked to him.

I also note that your use of verse James 2:19 incorrectly. James 2:19. If you read the verse, it does not say that demon believe in god, but they believe he is one. They know he exist, they know his power, and the shudder because they know.
"You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder."

"Also, knowing God and being a Christian are completely different."
I agree that they are different. One can be a Christian and not keep god's commandments, thus not just in the eyes of god. One can be a non-Christian and keep god's commandments, thus is just in the eyes of god.

"God is real, and to believe in him means to believe that he exists."
There is a difference in believing someone is real, and believing in them. Satan believes god is real, he believe in god's power, he believe god is right, but he does not believe in his rules because he does not follow them.

"They said, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household."" Acts 16:31
Again we run into the problem with the definition of believing in Lord Jesus. But I notice a double standard with your definition. Earlier you mentioned that according to your definition, satan and demons believe in god. Now you give a verse that says anyone who believes will be saved. The definition I use for believing in god does not suffer from this double standard. Satan and Demons do not believe in god according to my definition. Now you said not to use the word believe, but notice that the word trust does not change the verse much. In order to trust someone you have to know them.

"for it is not the hearers of the Law who are just before God, but the doers of the Law will be justified. For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, "
Also note that the law does not say you have to be christian or jewish. Note that in verse from Romans 2: 13-16 those who do not hear the law. This would include people who are non-jew and non-christian. Now if the law required you to be christian or jewish, then how on earth could you not hear the law but follow it?

"I feel we may not be understanding each other, that we might just be arguing back and forth the same things, meaning the same thing." We clearly do not have the same conclusion since I believe that non-christians can go to heaven yet you do not.

The law does not mean that you are a christian otherwise Roman 2:13-16 would be false or make no sense.

May the holy spirit help you understand the bible. And god bless you.
Debate Round No. 4
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Mathgeekjoe 2 years ago
Mathgeekjoe
@Pro-lifeConservative. "Perceived throughout the ages" Are you assuming that every person knows of history?
"Except he does know God" Are you saying my hypothetical person knows of god, if you are what do you mean by know?
I personally believe that everyone knows god in their souls which is why the law is written on the hearts.
Posted by Pro-lifeConservative 2 years ago
Pro-lifeConservative
Except he does know God because his divine attributes are clearly perceived throughout the ages so that no man is without excuse.
Posted by Mathgeekjoe 2 years ago
Mathgeekjoe
Sorry for the double post. But anyways, to prove why my definition of belief is correct, I will give a hypothetical person. Lets say a person never heard of the bible, never heard of Jesus, but follows the law better than anyone who has. The only thing the person has that disqualifies them from heaven was something they didn't have control over? That sounds like it goes against fairness, which would mean god is unfair, which since god says he is fair and just, that would make god a liar.
Posted by Mathgeekjoe 2 years ago
Mathgeekjoe
@mystery_man43 Your analogy of the chair doesn't go with your point well. For if you do not know the chair exist doesn't not mean that you cannot sit on it by mere accident. It is just fairly unlikely, the same can be said for people who don't know of Jesus's existence, they can still follow the law without hearing of it, it is just harder.
Posted by Mathgeekjoe 2 years ago
Mathgeekjoe
@mystery_man43 Your analogy of the chair doesn't go with your point well. For if you do not know the chair exist doesn't not mean that you cannot sit on it by mere accident. It is just fairly unlikely, the same can be said for people who don't know of Jesus's existence, they can still follow the law without hearing of it, it is just harder.
Posted by mystery_man43 2 years ago
mystery_man43
@Mathgeekjoe You are correct, satan and demons do believe in God. However, when God gave His One and only Son, this means Jesus died on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. This requires us to repent of our sins, something satan and demons will not do. Believing in Christ is both knowing that He exists and trusting in Him. It is like sitting on a chair. You know that the chair exists and you must trust that it will hold your weight. You have to first believe that Jesus exists, like you believe that the chair exists, otherwise you won't know what's supporting you. You cannot just believe what Jesus is saying without truly believing that He exists. Then you won't know where the chair is and you could fall anywhere. That's my analogy for this argument. Maybe this article from Got Questions Ministries will help you: http://www.gotquestions.org.... My favorite sentence and what I believe to be the most important sentence from this article is "If you understand and believe what the Bible says about Jesus, and if you are trusting in those truths as the basis for salvation"you are saved! You "believe in Jesus" in the biblical sense." If you are UNDERSTANDING and BELIEVE what the Bible SAYS about JESUS and if you TRUST in those truths as the basis for SALVATION. We should probably bring this to another debate. May God bless you and help you truly understand the Bible.
Posted by Mathgeekjoe 2 years ago
Mathgeekjoe
@mystery_man43 But your point was already brought up in this debate. The problem with your quote is disagreements in the word believe. Your definition of believe runs into a double standard problem, because demons and satan believe in god, and they aren't going to heaven. I define belief in Jesus as following his teaching. Such following does not require one to hear such teaching. It works the same way as you can follow a law, even if you haven't heard of said law.
Posted by mystery_man43 2 years ago
mystery_man43
I'm sorry Joe, but I have to disagree on this one with you. John 3:16 ends this debate right now. John 3:16 specifically says that "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." What this means is that people who believe in Jesus (Christians), are the only ones who will not perish and suffer eternally. Additionally, they have to repent of their sins and follow God's laws.
Posted by Pro-lifeConservative 2 years ago
Pro-lifeConservative
That's perfectly fine, I understand completely. That is what happened to me on my forfeited round, except I could not even put something in.
Posted by Mathgeekjoe 2 years ago
Mathgeekjoe
I apologize for the short argument round 2, I was running low on time and I was tired so that was all I did.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by TBR 2 years ago
TBR
Pro-lifeConservativeMathgeekjoeTied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: A bit hard for an atheists, but a very interesting read. Both did a good job.

Conduct     Con   forfeited round
Argument    Con   Took me a bit to resolve this.  Pro basically conceded the point that Jesus died for all,
                  therefor are forgiving.  Further, nice discussion of the laws, however again pointing to
                  the new covenant "written on mens hearts".  Con pointed out that following the laws 
                  "those who keep it who will be declared just".  Con won that point, and the 
                  negates the resolution.